Friday, November 27, 2015

LAW & ORDER: Don't Commit Arson - Even If Your Mayor Gives "Room to Destroy"

It's not often that we don't have a riot over some alleged injustice here in Baltimore, but when we don't, it's because some kid set a business ablaze and law-abiding citizens are nodding their heads in approval as the hand of justice makes an example of him.

Words of advice: Don't commit arson - even if your mayor gives you "room to destroy."

I realize I'm about a week late in blogging, but I just have to share one good thing I've seen come from the rioting in Baltimore that has tarnished this town for probably the next twenty years far beyond it's previously-glowing charm (that's sarcasm). I give you the guilty conviction and subsequent sentencing of Raymon Carter, 24, of Baltimore, to four years in prison, along with an order to pay restitution of $500,000 (yeah, that last part will never happen, but it feels good to read).

The story here:

Because, when you're p*ssed off that cops keep killing people, go to your friendly neighborhood CVS, find the pharmaceutical section, and LIGHT THAT SH*T ABLAZE! That's how ya stick it to The Man!

Well, looks like the man stuck it right back.

How'd they get him?

Well, aside from the surveillance cameras everywhere that filmed him, it was the good neighbors who (following an offer of a reward) identified him, hence paving the way for him to be brought to justice.

Money or no money, I'm glad the good people of the community did the right thing and cooperated with local law enforcement in bringing the culprit to justice, regardless of the incentive.

Speaking of incentives, the following from the above-linked article:

"Officials continue to investigate this and other arsons that happened on April 27, 2015. Anyone with information is urged to call the ATF hotline, 1-888-ATF-FIRE1-888-ATF-FIRE FREE (1-888-283-34731-888-283-3473 FREE). A reward of up to $10,000 is still being offered by the ATF for information leading to the arrest and conviction of any individual responsible for these incidents."

Cheers to justice being served, ladies & gents.

Senseless destruction is not the way to stick it to The Man.


SOCIAL COMMENTARY: No Whining About Working Holidays - You Chose The Employer

My partner and I were making a little early-Christmas-shopping-run through a wholesaler yesterday between Thanksgiving dinner stops (multiple households) and for a moment I felt bad for the glum-looking sales attendant who looked like he was counting the hours and dreading working on the holiday.

The reality is that I have absolutely no idea what was going through his mind, but it did momentarily make me think of the (thankfully minimal) amount of griping I read on social media streams about having to work the holidays.

As though it isn't enough that every Tom, Dick, & Harry have the means to post anything and everything they want, including their opinions on anything and everything they want (myself included!), for the entire world to see in a social media post, any time, day or night - a thing that was utterly unheard-of twenty years ago - it is still, apparently, necessary in this victimhood society in which we live for SOME folks who might have to work a holiday to make sure that EVERYONE watching in their social network knows about it, in an apparent attempt to gripe, rouse sympathy, and make their sad reality known to all who might come across the post.

Unfortunately, working holidays is a sad reality in such worlds as retail.

From the time I was 15, for years thereafter, I worked in retail. So I know how that goes. Practically running a twenty-four hour, 365-day-a-year operation, in my case. It was surprisingly easy to leave retail, incidentally - without having acquired higher education, at that - but even though that's not everyone's experience, I also found that it was also even easier to stay out of retail once I was gone from retail than it was to initially get out of retail. I have to add that I have family members, extended family members, friends, and acquaintances in retail, and upon hearing their stories (you know, the usual) about the perils of working in customer service, have offered them opportunity after opportunity (very similar to the opportunity that was offered to me) to get out of retail and get into one of the many fields that doesn't generally require mandated holiday work. Not one of them has taken me up on an offer - for some reason or another, they somehow believed themselves unqualified, had no interest in what was offered as an alternative to retail, or perhaps found a new & different & unfamiliar environment intimidating. I really don't know the answer. This is just a recount of my own personal experience with retail, getting out of retail, staying out of retail, and offering others a way out of retail. I'm not suggesting that one SHOULD try to get out, or that we don't need folks working at the corner store. Not at all. I'm just saying, if it doesn't work for you, there are options for a great many of us.

The fact is, we choose our employer here in America, generally speaking. In fact, not one of you reading this sentence didn't elect to be employed by your employer. You may have not tried for a different job, you may have found your options limited, you may have had no other option for employment at the time that you accepted your current employment, if circumstances were dire - but you chose to be employed by your current employer, and you continue to choose to be employed so long as you are employed. That's the bottom line. The alternative might be unemployment, but you choose not to be unemployed by remaining employed. For some of you, retail is your employment. And for some, working holidays is a part of employment, whether retail employment or other employment.

And yes, it'd be nice if no one worked holidays and the world shut down on holidays, wouldn't it?

But it's time for a reality check. That's not the case.

You don't have to like it, but it says something about you that you use social media to whine and complain that you have to work on the holiday. It says you're a victim. A victim of The Man. It says you're a proud member of the victimhood society that is America today for far too many!

Instead, I have a proposition. And it's appropriate for Thanksgiving.

Try being thankful for your employment. Be thankful that you had the opportunity to become employed and stay employed, whatever your occupation. Yeah, working holidays sucks, and if you're one of the folks who has to work mandated holidays, I'm sorry. I've been there, and it's a buzzkill. But I promise, if your family has half a brain, any good ol' fashioned work ethic, and/or any thankfulness for your employment, they'll understand that it's a mandated part of employment.

And if you're one of those folks who complains just for the sake of complaining, and/or for the sake of being heard - doesn't the fact that you have the means to post anything and everything you want, including your opinions on anything and everything you want, for the entire world to see in a social media post, any time, day or night - a thing that was utterly unheard-of twenty years ago - couldn't you instead use that ability to show thanks for the fact that you're gainfully employed this holiday season, when there are so many others out there who would like to be and aren't?

Just a thought for tonight.
Happy Holidays, America.

Yours in liberty,